Space to consider
This is a selection from a variety of authors on my bookshelf. These books are classics rather than latest works, chosen for the significance and endurance of their message. They are texts of theology and some are not easy reading, but worth the work! Some are works of reference, but others are intended to be read through.
A re-statement of apologetics for the present day. Delightfully written and sensitive to modern culture.
Yoder’s message is that the kingdom is a real threat to the political order, and that Jesus’ death at the hands of politicians was no accident.
A must-have reference book tracing usage and context of biblical words from Hebrew through to secular Greek. This is a useful upgrade from Vines Expository Dictionary.
Theological Dictionary of the New Testament: Kittel, Friedrich ed (Abridged)
A classic work to understand the message of the New Testament. GE Ladd pioneered the idea that the Kingdom of Heaven (already and not yet) is the central theme of the gospels.
All about principalities, powers, authorities, but from a solid theological perspective. Berkhof pioneers the connection between Paul’s language of spiritual forces in heavenly places and earthly political realities.
Another classic work for a church emerging from the historical cocoon of cultural privilege. Easy to read and very engaging.
A solid theological work from a conservative viewpoint, advocating the role of women in leadership.
A survey of the role of the Old Testament prophet, from a pre-eminent OT scholar. Another classic work.
Brueggemann picks out a hundred or so themes (ancestors, angels, the ark…) and gives a survey of their development through the Old Testament. Excellent reference for biblical theology.
A restatement of kingdom-centred theology from a Vineyard perspective. A great survey of this biblical theme.
A sample of NT Wright’s work re-reading Paul’s letters as a call to inclusion in the covenant people rather than personal salvation. Controversial and brilliant.
Newbigin was a missionary who returned to UK and discovered his homeland had become a mission field. Another great resource for a church in a relativistic culture.
An easy introduction to the discovery that others have gone before us! A great read about the good ,the bad and the ugly!
I’m not a great fan of systematic theology (it tends to put things in boxes), but this is a great one-volume reference to have. It is a solid theological work written from a charismatic angle.
This all about the atonement – why did Jesus need to die? A masterful survey and nuanced perspective from NT Wright.
An old classic, but invaluable introduction to serious bible study and preparation for teaching or preaching.
Tom Wright gives biblical insight on a range of contemporary issues: evolution, the environment, terrorism… A great (and easy) read.
A biblical statement of the preterist position which holds that most of the terrible events (Great Tribulation) forecast by Jesus in Matthew 24 already happened in AD 70. At times this book veers towards the sensationalist. But well worth the read.